Goa Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrao on July 12 said, that he is “deeply pained” by the recent spate of religious desecrations, suggesting that the violent acts were aimed at provoking communal discord and promotion of religious hatred.
“The Church in Goa is deeply pained with the recent spate of desecrations of religious structures and burial places of the Christian community, along with a stray incident also targeting the Hindu community in the State,” Ferrao said in a statement issued here. More than 100 crosses and plaques at a cemetery in southern Goa were desecrated in the wee hours of Monday, July 10, police said.
Police sources said that a CCTV camera installed at the Guardian Angel Catholic cemetery in Curchorem village, 45 km from Panaji, was damaged before the vandals went around indiscriminately desecra-ting crosses and plaques fixed atop graves. “We do not tolerate such mis-chief,” Parrikar said, when asked to comment desceration of the Holy Crosses in St Jose de Areal and Gudi Paroda villages, located nearly.
“These violent incidents seem to be designed by vested interests to provoke communal discord and promote religious hatred. While we strongly condemn the same, I personally appeal to our brothers and sisters of all faiths to refrain from taking any retaliatory action or even fanning the flame of religious hatred in their hearts,” archbishop added.
The statement comes in wake of a series of desecrations of Catholic and Hindu religious symbols, including the incident, when several Catholic crosses were smashed and grave-stones broken at a cemetery in south Goa’s Curchorem town, located 45 km from Panaji.